Welcome to Greece, on arrival, check in to your hotel and relax
Mycenae – Nauplia
We head to the ancient city of Mycenae, which lies on the way to our final stop, Nauplia (Nafplio). Mycenae was a bronze age city whose acropolis dates from between the 14th and 13th century BCE when the Mycenaean civilization was at its peak of power, influence and artistic expression. As an important archaeological site, it is a must visit for any history enthusiast. The citadel here comprises several sites of great significance, some of which we would be visiting. The palace, occupying a central spot atop the citadel, was accessed from the south through two guard rooms. During the earlier times, this was decorated with beautiful frescoes and mosaics.
The Lion Gate guards and provides the main access to the citadel. The two lions arranged symmetrically around a column is the first example of representational monumental sculpture in the European continent.
Proceeding to our destination, Nauplia, we check in and step out for a short visit to the sites that this city holds for us. Beginning with the Palamidi castle, a fortress nestled on the crest of a 216-metre high hill, was built by the Venetians during their second occupation of the area (1686–1715). This visit is followed by the Church of Ayios Georgios, whose byzantine style makes it unmistakably one of the most beautiful churches in the region.
Olympia – Delphi
Today, we make a trip to the famous city of Delphi with a stopover at the residence of gods, Olympia. The stop takes us to sites that are seen in mythological movies and heard of in stories.
The Temple of Zeus is a structure dedicated to Zeus and was built between 472 and 456 BC. The main structure of the building was of a local limestone that was unattractive and of poor quality, and so it was coated with a thin layer of stucco to give it an appearance of marble like all the sculptural decoration on the temple.
Our next stop is at the Temple of Hera, which was destroyed by an earthquake in the early 4th century AD and never rebuilt. In modern times, the temple is the location where the torch of the Olympic flame is lit, by focusing the rays of the sun. The temple was dedicated to Hera, the wife of Zeus and one of the most important female deities in Greek religion .
Proceeding to our destination, Delphi, it stands as a modern town and an archaeological site. It dates back to the classical period of Greece between 510 and 323 BC.The site of Delphi was believed to be determined by Zeus when he sought to find the centre of his “Grandmother Earth”. Here awaits the world famous Delphi Ruins that is seldom missed by tourists. The former, a world heritage site, is believed by the ancient Greeks to be the centre of the world – according to mythology. The complex houses important monuments such as the Temple of Apollo, Altar of the Chians, theatre, stadium and several such structures. Enjoy your time at this architectural marvel while our guide takes you in great depth behind the history.
Check out and head to the capital.
Here we have picturesque structures that symbolize the country globally, amongst which is the Acropolis, which is an ancient citadel comprising monuments housing the famous Parthenon. It is a temple dedicated to the goddess Athena. It was completed in 438 BC although decoration of the building continued until 432 BC. It is the most important surviving building of Classical Greece, generally considered the zenith of the Doric order.
After a tour to these historical wonders, we take a look at the modern structures that showcase the architectural development of Greece. We begin with the Museum of acropolis, which is focussed on the findings in the archaeological site of the Acropolis. It was built in 2003 and designed by the architect Bernard Tschumi whose design revolves around three concepts: light, movement, and a tectonic and programmatic element.
Next is the Onassis Culture Centre that hosts events such as dance, theatre, music, etc. The result of a competition, it was designed by a French group whose use of white marble bands makes this a very unique building. The unique configuration of the facade serves as a stage set which imbues the building with a sense of mystery both during the day, when the marble bands serve to reflect the intense Attic light and create the impression from afar of a gentle wave, and at night when, artificially lit, they turn the image inside out by allowing the inside of the building to shine through and revealing the warm shell surrounding the rooms and auditoria.
Check out and head to the airport for your flight to Istanbul. On arrival, check in and relax. Enjoy the day exploring the country by yourself
We start with the Blue Mosque, known for the blue tiles that adorn the walls of its interior. It was built from 1609 to 1616, during the rule of Ahmed I. It contains a tomb of the founder, a madrasah and a hospice. The Sultan Ahmed Mosque is still popularly used as a mosque
Next is the Topkapi Palace, the ancient residence of mighty Ottoman Sultans for almost 400 years. The Islamic art in the palace along with holy relics makes this one of the most visited places in the country. Located in front of the Imperial Gate of the palace is the fountain of Ahmed III. The mix of ottoman and western styles is evident here and today it serves as a drinking fountain beneath the calligraphic plates that dominate the walls.
Finally, the magical Hagia Sophia Museum, which is considered as one of the eight wonders of the world, also occupies a prominent place in the history of art and architecture. It is one of the rare works of this size and age that has survived to our day.
To end the journey, we visit the Grand Bazaar, which is one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world, with 61 covered streets and over 3,000 shops which attract between 250,000 and 400,000 visitors daily.
Check out of the hotel as we head to the airport for our flight back home
OPTIONAL: WORKSHOP AT A LEADING UNIVERSITY
While we have enjoyed the marvels of the city, a workshop is an ideal component in such a tour that provides you the opportunity to learn first-hand from the experts of the region around the history and development of the country’s architecture. We provide you the chance to participate in a half day programme with:
- Certificate of participation
- Chance to interact with international students
- Global exposure
- History and development of architecture in the region
» Please note that the itinerary is tentative and all inclusions are subject to availability at the time of booking
» All workshops and factory visits are subject to being operated and availability
» Meals will be provided as applicable in all the tours